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On the Mutual Compatibility of Democracy and Marxian Socialism

  • Joseph Cropsey (a1)

Much of the high politics of our time is affected by the hostility and suspicion that pervade relations between the Western democracies and the socialist world. Is it possible that the hostility and suspicion are misplaced, and that the two world systems can find a common ground on which to acknowledge each other as compatible co-denizens between whom there is no difference so potent that the being of one must be a reproach to the being of the other? With a view to this question, I wish to ask whether it is possiblefor a Marxist society to be democratic or for a democracy to elect Marxism or to elect to remain Marxist. Putting the question in the form, “Is it possible …” would enable us to answer it by pointing to even one example of a Marxist democracy, thus to dissolve what seems like a theoretical matter in an empirical medium.

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1 Chernenko, K., quoted in translation, New York Times, September 26, 1984, p. 6.

2 Plato, Republic, 349 B–C.

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Social Philosophy and Policy
  • ISSN: 0265-0525
  • EISSN: 1471-6437
  • URL: /core/journals/social-philosophy-and-policy
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